SCOTUS Makes Historic Ruling on Presidential Immunity, Angering Democrats

( – Since former president Donald Trump left office, presidential immunity has been a hot topic. Finally, the Supreme Court has brought some much-needed clarity to the debate by deciding that former presidents have immunity for anything they did as part of their constitutional duties. The decision hasn’t gone down well with liberals, though –- and one Democrat lawmaker has launched a bold attempt to reverse it.

On July 1, the Supreme Court delivered a long-awaited ruling on presidential immunity, which was triggered by the legal issues surrounding Donald Trump. The 6-3 decision, split along partisan lines, found that a former president has absolute immunity from criminal prosecution for any action that’s covered by the constitutional authority of his job. That throws a huge wrench in the works for special counsel Jack Smith, who’s prosecuting Trump over his alleged role in the January 6, 2021, Capitol riot. That trial is likely to be delayed, possibly until after the election, as attorneys argue about which of Trump’s actions that day fell inside his constitutional authority. Sentencing in his New York business fraud trial has already been delayed since the Supreme Court ruling.

Many Democrats are outraged that Trump could now be immune from many of the charges that have been placed against him. There’s been wild speculation in the media about how the decision means a president could order the Navy SEALs to assassinate his political opponents and then claim immunity (totally ignoring the fact that assassinating the other party’s candidate isn’t part of the constitutional role of the president). Most of the protests are already dying away because it’s likely to be decades before there’s any chance of the Supreme Court reversing its decision, but one liberal congressman has just evoked the nuclear option –- he wants to amend the Constitution.

Will We Have A New Amendment?

On July 1, Representative Joe Morelle (D-NY) announced that he plans to file a constitutional amendment that would “ensure that no president is above the law.” Morelle openly admits that his goal is to reverse the “harmful” Supreme Court decision. He says the court has failed to prioritize democracy, and his amendment will restore the balance.

Of course, there’s one problem –- amending the Constitution isn’t easy, whether the amendment comes from the states or the federal government. First, Morelle will need to get his amendment through both the House and Senate with a two-thirds majority in each. With the Senate evenly balanced and a narrow GOP majority in the House, that seems unlikely. Next, the legislatures of three-quarters of the states must ratify the amendment within seven years. Morelle has an uphill fight on his hands.

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